Gaines' Mill, VA

Battle of Gaines' Mill Sketch


Date(s): June 27, 1862

Location: Please click on link below for map.

Gaines Mill Battlefield (national park), Virginia, United States

Campaign(s): Peninsula Campaign [March-September 1862]

Battles in Campaign:



  • Union: Brig. Gen. Fitz John Porter

  • Confederate: Gen. Robert E. Lee

Principal Forces:

  • Union: 34,214

  • Confederate: 57,018


  • This was the third of the Seven Daysí Battles.

  • On June 27, 1862, Gen. Robert E. Lee renewed his attacks against Porterís V Corps, which had established a strong defensive line behind Boatswainís Swamp north of the Chickahominy River.

  • Porterís reinforced V Corps held fast for the afternoon against disjointed Confederate attacks, inflicting heavy casualties.

  • At dusk, the Confederates finally mounted a coordinated assault that broke Porterís line and drove his soldiers back toward the river.

  • The Federals retreated across the river during the night.

  • Defeat at Gainesí Mill convinced McClellan to abandon his advance on Richmond and begin the retreat to James River.

  • Gainesí Mill saved Richmond for the Confederacy in 1862.

Photo Gallery:2

Gaines Mills Battlefield

Gaines Mills Battlefield

Watt Family Farm

Confederate Pursuit

Union Artillery

Porter's Union Artillery

Whiting's Advance

Hood's Attack

Site of Hood's Attack

The Battle Ends - Area of Porter's Retreat

The Cavalry Charge

Mistaken Identity

View from Hill Looking Southwest

View from Hill Looking Northeast Along Porter's Line

View from Hill Looking Northeast Along Porter's Line to Watt House

Site of Griffin's Union Troops East of Watt House


Classification3: A


  • Union: 6,800

  • Confederate: 8,700

Results: Confederate Victory Miniature Confederate Victory

Battlefield Websites:

Lodging and Restaurants: Virginia Tourism

Recommended Resources:

1 National Park Service summary.

2 Please click on the image to enlarge it. You may copy the images if you include the following note and link with each image: "Courtesy of"

3 Classification:

  • A - having a decisive influence on a campaign and a direct impact on the course of the war

  • B - having a direct and decisive influence on their campaign

  • C - having observable influence on the outcome of a campaign

  • D - having a limited influence on the outcome of their campaign or operation but achieving or affecting important local objectives

4 Casualties are someone killed, injured, wounded, captured or missing.

Revised 03/29/2013